The long-time produce clerk at the locals' supermarket here in Aspen was chatting up a customer this morning.

"Do you watch the stock market? It's been going down down down. Yes it jumps every now and then, but still, it's going down.

"Then I heard on the radio that a lot of people are going to start walking away from their mortgages….just walking away from their houses….Do you think that can happen here?"

The customer was probably a local real estate broker, because he paused and gave a very detailed description of how the different sub-markets in this area would behave under different mortgage market scenarios.

"Okay, okay," the clerk continued. "So you think I should still go ahead and buy that house?"

At that point I couldn't find anything else nearby to pretend to examine, so I moved on.

A Kennedy/shoeshine boy moment?


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